Loving Kindness (Metta) Meditation Script: Use these exact steps!
Here you fill find a script with all the steps and words for the loving kindness meditation, which is also known as ‘metta meditation‘. Loving kindness is a Buddhist practice and means saying a prayer/mantra. This can be done out loud or in your heart. Read further…
What is Loving Kindness – Compassion Exercise (Metta Meditation)?
Compassion means that we wish ourselves or other people good things , that we have compassion for them, and that we have a very caring attitude towards them. Compassion is excellent to apply in meditation: metta meditation . This has even been included in Jon Kabat-Zinn’s official mindfulness curriculum.
How does ‘metta’ feel? You can imagine being a parent, and you can put yourself in the sense that a parent has for a young child. That feeling is somewhere in the body. These are not only thoughts, but also emotions and a physical feeling that you get when you approach another person with Loving Kindness.
Compassion is the willingness to see the innocence in everyone.
Now let’s learn (self) compassion step by step by following the steps of the metta meditation …
The steps (script) of the metta meditation
Step 1 – Choose one or more people for this ‘compassion prayer’
You may start by choosing someone for whom you want to feel compassion and loving kindness. Just allow yourself to bring to your attention your own experiences with that feeling of Loving Kindness, that feeling of deep caring.
So allow yourself to picture someone with whom you immediately have that feeling of loving kindness. Notice the images and thoughts that appear when you think about this person, as well as feel what is happening to your body.
You can also bring to mind someone who does not automatically give you that feeling. Now let’s move to the next step and focus on some loving wishes …
Step 2 – Now wish this person nice things
Wish this person nice things now. For example with the following sentences / mantras:
- I wish you will find peace. May you live in peace.
- I wish you would suffer less.
- I wish you could know what it’s like to be loved.
- May you be safe and protected.
- May you experience happiness.
- May you develop forgiveness.
- May you be saved.
- May you give and feel love.
- May you stay healthy and strong.
- May you forgive yourself.
- May you accept yourself.
Allow yourself to have these thoughts and to direct them to one or more people. You can also replace the word ‘you’ with ‘we’. May we be happy … May we give and feel love …
Step 3 – Feel the love in you
Notice what it does to your body when you have these loving thoughts for other people.
Step 4 – Now direct these loving, compassionate feelings to yourself
Now allow yourself to direct some of these thoughts to yourself. Use the same wishes you had for others and add a few if necessary. You deserve compassion, support, care, acceptance and love from yourself.
Step 5 – Involve everyone on Earth in your meditation
Send these compassion feelings to everyone on Earth now.
- May we be in peace …
- May we forgive ourselves …
Tony Robbins often does a meditation in his seminars where you put your hand on your heart and imagine taking a deep breath into the core of the earth. With each breath you make three circles around the core of the earth and exhale it powerfully to all your loved ones.
Step 6 – Bring the energy of the metta meditation into your daily life
Wish all this beauty in silence on the street to someone else, or during a break, for example.
Tell people you meet – in silence or even out loud: I love you. Say this to all living things you encounter during your day. For example when you are on a bike.
Do you see a bum? I love you. Ducks? I love you. Annoying mosquitoes? I love you. Loitering youths with a pimped car? I love you. An old lady? I love you.
Is that crazy? Maybe … until it starts to get used to and it doesn’t feel crazy anymore. Isn’t it really normal? Yes, but then read the article about how low normal is. Giving love and compassion should be normal.
Someone who is not able to hate anyone, who is kind and compassionate, and who is not at all selfish – I love such a dedicated person.
– Bhagavad Gita 12: 13-14
Self- compassion is an important part of metta
In step 4 of the above instructions you will see the instruction to also have compassion for yourself . This is just as important as having compassion for others.
Understand yourself when faced with shortcomings. Realize that people have imperfections and pain is inevitable. Put your hand on your heart, allow and observe unwanted emotions without adding extra layers, such as judgments, thoughts or a second layer of emotions.
Self-compassion is a very meaningful meditation for me. For a while I was left with a rotten, empty feeling. With that rotten feeling I sat down in the morning. I revealed myself with understanding and I hugged myself with love. This finally allowed me to feel all kinds of feelings moving within myself that I hadn’t paid attention to for months. This allowed it to flow again and that relieved.
More elements of (self) compassion:
- Not judgment, but understanding.
- Acceptance and detachment . Love the volatility of everything, love everything until death follows.
- Caring (for yourself). “You’re going through something difficult, but I’m here for you.”
- No isolation, but connection (with all of humanity) and the realization that our problems are not exclusively ours. Not “How am I different from others?” But: “How am I the same as others?”
- Acceptance for the unpleasantness in life. Say yes to the uncertainty, the confusion, the doubt, the struggle, the pain, the sadness, the mess, the unpredictability, the uncontrollability, the bumps in the road, the heartbreak, your own inability, its mysterious nature and its despair . Turning towards the inevitable destruction, rather than ignoring it, so that the deep intelligence can do its magical work in the form of change.
- Not always wanting to solve the problem or looking for answers, but acknowledge how difficult the situation is. Confirming the Unsolved Mystery. Letting go of all reference points and knowing nothing at all. Love the total absence of satisfying answers.
- Mindfulness, so being aware of your suffering and really feeling it and ‘sitting together’ instead of looking for distraction. This simply feel, whatever form this , therefore, assumes at this time.
- Self-acceptance, including acceptance for all your shortcomings and imperfections.
- Self-compassion is about accepting that you are human, and that others are human too, including all shortcomings and imperfections.
- Treat yourself as you would treat a good friend.
- Feel your emotions.
- Welcome your vulnerability . This is the opposite of perfection . Herein is your true beauty and strength.
- And in the midst of that wonderful chaos, reconnect with our soul, our intuition. The place of silence, peace and space that cannot be destroyed. Remembering that quiet point that had always been our best friend. Finding strength in the clarity that has never left us.
Love the struggles of life, the sorrow, the mess, the confusion, the uncertainty, the unpredictability, the uncontrollability, its mysterious nature and its despair.
The secret of metta meditation: you don’t wish it exclusively on anyone
The secret is: if you only wish this for others and not explicitly for yourself, it still has an effect on yourself. There is no duality, but unity.
I know you were once me and I was you. So today I pray for you.
If you just do the metta meditation for yourself, so if you love who you are, then others will find us approachable and love us for who we are!
More ways for compassion and compassion
- Be kind.
- Be forgiving.
- You have empathy when someone is hurt: you care about it. You are touched with your heart and you build up understanding for the other, for example when the other makes a mistake. That person then needs someone who can be understanding. You show the other person that he is not alone.
- Be helpful and take thoughtful action. Notice and take action when people or animals in your area are in need or sadness.
- Use nice, kind words. Wish beautiful things to others and yourself.
- Listen .
- Don’t judge and criticize.
- Allow all of your feelings and emotions to be there.
Metta meditations have been incorporated into some pop songs too!
Another ‘loving kindness’ song by Jason Mraz: Have It All was released in 2018.
Books about metta (compassion)
Two good books on compassion have come out. Former monk Thupten Jinpa developed an acclaimed compassion training with Stanford University and was the Dalai Lama’s principal translator for nearly 30 years. Compassion for Beginners is his science-based book. In Speaking with Love, Listening with Compassion , Thich Nhat Hanh discusses how to communicate with compassion.
Good luck with loving kindness!
These were all ways and tips for compassion. Feel free to leave a comment.